Revenge of the quote (UNCLASSIFIED)

Mullins, Bill AMRDEC Bill.Mullins at US.ARMY.MIL
Wed Aug 15 15:08:36 UTC 2012

Classification: UNCLASSIFIED
Caveats: NONE

Zakaria did do some bad things with respect to his blog post that copied
stuff from Time Magazine, and has owned up to that -- no question.

But the issue with the Andy Grove quote is bogus.  Fahri made
accusations against Zakaria without checking his facts -- Zakaria did
credit Prestowitz in the original hardcover and paperback (as Amazon's
search inside the book shows) with chapter endnotes at the end of the

Copies of the relevant citations are shown here:

Zakaria's publisher calls Fahri's assertions "fundamentally untrue":

Looks to me like Zahri and the Washington Post screwed the pooch on this

And I'd respectfully disagree with Joel's statement:
> Something put in quotes should always be cited to its
> source.

Obviously, there are many nonfiction books in political science and
recent history to which this generalization doesn't apply.  Bob
Woodward's "The Brethren", and Gene Kranz's "Failure is not an Option"
are two that I've read that I was able to confirm do not have end- or
footnotes.  The current NYTimes best seller "The Amateur" by Edward
Klein (about Barack Obama in the White House) doesn't seem to have end-
or footnotes (although it does have a bibliography and list of
interviews).  Neither does Nobel Prize winner Paul Krugman's "The Return
of Depression Economics".

If the author decides to write a book without specific notes and
citations, that doesn't make the author wrong (but it certainly may
affect the perception of the book).

> -----Original Message-----
> From: American Dialect Society [mailto:ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU] On
Behalf Of
> Joel S. Berson
> Sent: Wednesday, August 15, 2012 8:53 AM
> Subject: Re: Revenge of the quote
> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
> -
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       "Joel S. Berson" <Berson at ATT.NET>
> Subject:      Re: Revenge of the quote
> -
> Naming the speaker is not the same as citing the source.  In contrast
> to Victor, I believe Zakaria was incorrect ethically.
> If Zakaria found the statement by Grove in Prestowitz's book, then he
> should have acknowledged that.  "Grove said [X], as quoted in
> Prestowitz."  Or "... said [X] in an interview with Prestowitz".  And
> also included a footnote citing Prestowitz, page Y.
> Zakaria did the wrong thing by not citing his source.  He did a
> useful thing by naming the speaker.  (I find little more irritating
> in reading scholarly books than finding a quotation cited only to
> someone who published it, leaving the speaker and often the date
> unknown and forcing the reader to go to another book to get that
> But Farhi (the writer of does some wrong things
> also.  If one reads further in his article, it appears that Zakaria's
> sin was not citing his source for Grove's words (that is, not
> acknowledging Prestowitz), rather than using Grove's words.  But
> Farhi does not make that absolutely clear, since he uses the words
> "source" and "attribution" without explicitly distinguishing "naming"
> vs. "citing" and without saying explicitly whether Grove's words were
> or were not placed within quotes.  (In fact, there is an implication
> in Farhi's article that Grove's words *were* in quotes: "Zakaria, in
> an interview Monday, defended the practice of not attributing quotes
> in a popular book").  If Zakaria did not put Grove's words in quotes,
> then he plagiarized.  If he put the words in quotes but omitted
> Grove's name, then he was sloppy.  But if Zakaria put Grove's words
> in quotes and named Grove (but not Prestowitz), then in Parhi's lead
> sentence -- "Columnist and TV host Fareed Zakaria, who acknowledged
> d2a13e249eb2_story.html>
> parts of a magazine article last week, appears to have also published
> without attribution a passage from a 2005 book" -- Farhi is
> associating a lack of source citation with plagiarizing.
> Another sentence in Farhi's article reads:
> >On Friday, Zakaria apologized to Time magazine, its readers and
> >historian Jill Lepore for an Aug. 20 Time column on gun control that
> >he acknowledged contained material taken without attribution from an
> >article Lepore wrote in April for the New Yorker magazine.
> This reads to me more like Zakaria used Lepore's "material" without
> either putting it in quotes or attributing it to Lepore.  That
> certainly is unethical and plagiarism.
> And I am not sympathetic with Zakaria's assertion in the following
> >Zakaria, in an interview Monday, defended the practice of not
> >attributing quotes in a popular book. "As I write explicitly [in the
> >book], this is not an academic work where everything has to be
> >acknowledged and footnoted," his said. The book contains "hundreds"
> >of comments and quotes that aren't attributed because doing so, in
> >context, would "interrupt the flow for the reader," he said.
> Something put in quotes should always be cited to its
> source.  Footnote markers are at most an initial and temporary
> interruption for readers not accustomed to them.  And using endnotes
> disturbs the flow even less.
> I see no legal issue -- either with what Zakaria did or with quoting
> Grove without naming him but citing Prestowitz.  Publishing a few of
> Grove's words attributed to Grove seems fair use.  Not acknowledging
> one's source is not cricket, but not illegal.  Quoting someone's
> words without naming the speaker but citing where one obtained the
> quote is not illegal either.  AFAIK.
> Joel
> At 8/15/2012 03:29 AM, Victor Steinbok wrote:
> >
> >>Zakaria's 2008 book, "The Post-American World," contains a quote
> >>former Intel Corp. chief executive Andy Grove about the nation's
> >>economic power. "America is in danger of following Europe down the
> >>tubes, and the worst part is that nobody knows it," Grove says in
> >>Zakaria's book. "They're all in denial, patting themselves on the
> >>as the Titanic heads straight for the iceberg full speed ahead."
> >>The first edition of Zakaria's book, which became a bestseller,
> >>no mention of the comment's source, nor does a paperback version of
> >>"Post-American World" published in 2009.
> >>In fact, Grove's comment was published three years earlier in "Three
> >>Billion New Capitalists: The Great Shift of Power to the East," by
> >>former Commerce Department official Clyde V. Prestowitz.
> >>In an interview Monday, Prestowitz said Grove made the comment in an
> >>interview with him that was conducted while Prestowitz was
> >>his book. The quote appears in the book's first chapter.
> >
> >FWIW, Zakaria seems to be correct both legally and ethically.
> >Irrespectively where the original quote came from, Zakaria did the
> >thing and cited its author, not the reteller. Prestowitz has no
> >copyright claim, unless he actually made up the quote himself, but
> >*he* is in the ethical hot water, not Zakaria.
> >
> >For some people here, however, this practice makes quote-sleuthing
> >complicated.
> >
> >VS-)
> >
> >------------------------------------------------------------
> >The American Dialect Society -
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society -
Classification: UNCLASSIFIED
Caveats: NONE

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